For Immediate Release
Washington, D.C. January 2015 — National Council of Catholic Women continues decades-long
tradition of participating in March for Life, the largest pro-life event in the world.
Active in the pro-life movement even prior to the infamous Roe v Wade decision that legalized abortion
in 1973, the National Council of Catholic Women has been, since its foundation by the U.S. Catholic
bishops in 1920, a voice for the dignity of every human person.
NCCW President, Dr. Rebecca Woodhull, emphasized, “Our voices must be heard throughout the country
in defense of life, traditional marriage, religious liberty and many other issues that affect our ability to
practice our Catholic faith."
NCCW board members attended the Leadership Mass on January 21st
, celebrated by Cardinal Sean P.
O’Malley, Chair of the Pro-life Secretariat, recognizing the leadership role of NCCW in promoting the
sacredness of all life.
“Prior to the Leadership Mass, we visited the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, Secretariat
of Laity, Marriage and Family Life, where we met with Andrew Lichtenwalner, Executive Director and
several members of the staff,” said immediate Past President, Patty Johnson (2009 - 2011). “Attending the
Pro-life Leadership Mass and reception since 2010 has given our Executive Committee opportunities to
speak with Catholic leaders about NCCW's work in the pro-life movement.”
NCCW Board members along with 8000 others also attended the Vigil Mass celebrated by Cardinal Sean
P. O’Malley, along with hundreds of seminarians, priests, bishops and cardinals.
Past NCCW President Joann Hillebrand (1997-1999) recalled that she was invited to speak at the preMarch
rally, which was televised nationwide. This continued a tradition begun with Joan McGrath (1995-
97), who was privileged to stand on the platform with March for Life Founder Nellie Gray and to speak at
the rally. She recalls saying to cheers from the crowd, “My name is Joan McGrath, President of the
National Council of Catholic Women, representing 8 million pro-life women across the United States!”
The National Council of Catholic Women has always stood firmly with all U.S. Catholic bishops in
support of life and the dignity of human persons at every stage of life, from conception through natural
death. The entire Board of Directors and Province Directors from nearly thirty provinces around the
country, convened in Washington, D.C. for the annual Board of Directors’ meeting and joined together
with women’s councils from all across the country for the pro-life activities, culminating in the 42nd
annual March for Life, where NCCW joined the hundreds of thousands (some estimated half a million)
pro-life marchers making their joyful, prayerful trek from the rally site on the National Mall to the
For more information, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org, call 571-255-4938 or visit nccw.org.